As soon as Ford debuted the all-new, all-electric F-150 Lightning pickup, it offered interested customers a place in line for a refundable $100 deposit. The number of reservations that pile up early has become something of a bragging-rights measuring stick among highly anticipated new electric vehicles—think of the Tesla Model 3 or the GMC Hummer EV. Well, two days have passed since the Lightning struck, and Ford’s President and CEO Jim Farley has announced that the automaker has drummed up more than 44,500 reservations.
For those who haven’t already busted out their calculators, with pre-orders requiring $100 deposits, that puts Ford’s 48-hour reservation haul at … $4,450,000. Not bad for two days of letting the world get excited over your new electric full-size pickup truck.
The 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning will go on sale officially this time next year, but those who’ve put down deposits will be able to formally order theirs (for delivery in Spring 2022) starting this fall. At launch there will be four key versions: The $41,669 commercial-grade Lightning, the $56,669 Lightning XLT, the pricier Lightning Lariat, and the $92,169 Lightning Platinum. If you’re interested in the Lighting and have yet to put down a deposit, you may you so here.
What’s significant about the F-150 Lightning’s reservation volume isn’t the number itself—Tesla’s Model 3 at one point had 200,000 people signed up to buy it—but that the figure is a decent percentage of annual F-150 sales. The F-Series lineup that includes the best-selling F-150 pickup regularly approaches or hits 1 million units in sales each year. Put another way, the Lightning’s 44,500 reservations so far would represent nearly 5 percent of that total in a good year—beating the roughly 2 percent market share EVs enjoy in the car industry overall.
That is the F-150 Lightning’s big impact. It has the potential to supercharge the electric car market, if only because even a relatively small percentage of F-150 sales going electric would represent a huge number of vehicles. Were Ford able to maintain about 50,000 F-150 Lightning sales annually (certainly an “if”), the truck would immediately outsell Tesla’s Model Y crossover (based on 2020 annual figures). It would still trail the popular Tesla Model 3 sedan, which found over 170,000 new buyers last year. But the idea of taking a sales juggernaut such as the F-150 and offering it in an affordable, powerful, and long-range electric variant offers a compelling roadmap for the rest of the industry to make meaningful inroads into the EV market.